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Title: Wages, family background, on-campus performance and gender : an investigation of Chinese graduates' first job salaries
Author: Liu, Suyu
ISNI:       0000 0004 5356 8783
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2014
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The last five decades have witnessed an increasing interest in the education-employment transition. In China, millions of university students graduate each year. Their employment has important impact on various aspects of the Chinese society. Additionally, university-work transition is related to the well-being of university graduates and their families. Therefore the university-work transition in China deserves more attention from scholars and practitioners. This thesis examines the determination of Chinese university graduates’ first job salaries. It investigates whether and how university graduates’ family background, on-campus performance (OCP) and gender are linked with their first job salaries. The thesis distinguishes three dimensions of graduates’ family background: Hukou status, parental CCP membership and income. It distinguishes three dimensions of graduates’ OCP: academic achievements, professional capability and political/ideological attainment. Information collected through interviews is used to interpret the statistical results. The results show that graduates’ first job salaries are significantly affected by their professional skills, political/ideological attainments and family income. Graduates’ gender, academic performance and family Hukou status have little impact on their first job salaries. Compared with the widely observed wage disparities among less educated workers caused by gender and Hukou status, this thesis provides evidence that higher education helps reduce the gender wage gap and rural-urban disparity in China. Analyses in the thesis are consistent with ‘state as equalizer’ and ‘market as equalizer’ theories. This thesis provides little evidence to support the marketized transition theory, as we find graduates’ first job salaries are still largely affected by their political/ideological attainments in university. Considering the unique context, the results suggest that some widely used human capital indicators and productivity signals are not applicable in the Chinese labour market. Practical implications are derived from the thesis.
Supervisor: Mills, Colin; Murphy, Rachel Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Social Sciences ; on-campus performance ; first job ; investigation